Warning: Will Break Your Heart

Posted on Feb 23, 2016 in At Home

Warning:  Will Break Your Heart

It came out of the blue. Romeo was drinking too much water so I called the vet. Roy brought him in and he had his annual exam. “He looks great but let’s do some blood and urine work”.  No big deal. He was waiting for me when I came home and we went on our usual afternoon Frisbee play and walk.

Next morning, a call from the vet – his blood work is troubling. Red blood cells not right and white cells not right. He should have a chest and abdomen x-ray but to be safe he should have an ultrasound. So he jumped into the car with me and we went to the clinic that has an ultrasound machine. I brought him in and they took him to the back.

Next thing I know, the vet is coming out to me and we go into an examining room where she tells me that Romeo has a tumor on his spleen that is bleeding into his abdomen. I know from this. My dog Junior had this but he was sick. Romeo exhibited not one symptom. We had walked that morning. He ate and had his bone with peanut butter. He seemed fine. But he wasn’t. We were presented with two options: a major surgery with no guarantee of success or to put him down. Shock is too mild a word. I was devastated and so I called Roy and told him to get over to the clinic immediately. We signed the paperwork, went to see him, and sat with him while he was administered the drug. The good thing – he had no pain. He knew we were with him. The bad thing – he’s gone.

So here we are trying to process what has happened. There’s no Romeo greeting me exuberantly every day like he hadn’t seen me in weeks. No Romeo to take on our daily walks, rain, sleet or snow. No Romeo licking the plates as they go into the dishwasher. No Romeo in bed with us. No Romeo whining to go out with him to play. As anyone who is a dog owner knows, one day this will happen. Maybe your dog will have a different ending to their life but there will be an end and you will be left with an empty house, no face at the window, his stuff all over the house and nose prints on your car. And so the warning: be prepared to have your heart broken. But when you’ve had time to process that grief, you can remember the fun and joy they brought you and that can’t be replaced.

Just one week shy of his 8th birthday, we’ll be spreading his ashes over Lake Cochituate instead of giving him his Frosty Paws. So, this is for Romeo. He loved us unconditionally as we did him. It was a good life ended way too soon.

RIP – Romeo Podell



  1. This makes me so sad Gilah, I am at a loss. Loved Romeo stories. This is beautifully written. You had the sweetest relationship. <3

    • Hi Cait!
      Just seeing this now! Romeo was devastating to say the least. But we have a new boy. He came to us from South Carolina on Saturday. His name is Luke and he’s a sweetheart. It’s bittersweet but a good thing! Just got back from Cabo. how are you? good to hear from you.

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